Thought for the Week – “T is for Taking Action and Training”

I have chosen this “T” because it is multi-faceted like Business Owners and Leaders have to be to succeed.

So, as we get into a new week, this week’s thought is all about ….

T for Taking Action and Initiative, and

T for Training and Development

You know that successful people get things done, otherwise, they wouldn’t be very successful …

When taking action, often the first step is the hardest one. This is when fear, doubt and worry can take over. Even despite all your preparation up to this point, those voices still silently ask, “What if it doesn’t work?”

Take heart – you are not alone.

The most successful people who have gone before you felt the very same doubts, worries and fears.  But despite their uncertainties, they still took action.

So, no matter what, just get started and don’t wait for the “perfect” time as there is no perfect time!

Make your first steps small so that you can get into the habit of action, get some successes under your belt, and build your “action taking muscle.”

Out of all of the A to Z’s of Success, there is no principle more critical to your success than the principle of TAKING ACTION. 

Calvin Coolidge said it best when he said …

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.

Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.

Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.

Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”

To be successful in life, we don’t have to be the smartest, most educated or talented, we just need to take action, and act with determination and an expectation to succeed. 

You have everything you need at your disposal to be successful right now. Don’t delay another minute. You KNOW that success is MORE about taking action and LESS about having the best education, skills, smarts, money or looks.

“I had to make my own living and my own opportunity! But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them!”

-Madam C.J. Walker-

(Creator of beauty products and the first female self-made millionaire)

 “The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.”

-Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari & Chuck E. Cheese-


“The key is to just get on the bike, and the key to getting on the bike …

is to stop thinking about ‘there are a bunch of reasons I might fall off’

and just hop on and peddle the damned thing. You can pick up a map,

a tyre pump, and better footwear along the way.”

-Dick Costolo, founder of 


“The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance.

Remember, the greatest failure is to not try.”

-Debbi Fields, founder of Mrs. Fields Cookies-


The thing is, how we learned at school is so different to how we learn out here in the real world right?

Business Owners and Leaders all have to think entrepreneurially …

Entrepreneurial education and training provides individuals with the ability to recognise commercial opportunities, self-esteem, knowledge and skills to act on them and to commercialise a concept, manage resources, and initiate a business venture.

The Challenges of the Global Economy …

Discoveries and inventions, revolutions and social movements have been the triggers of progress throughout history. Mankind has to face new challenges in the 21st century such as …

  • globalisation
  • the rapid pace of innovation
  • the fast spread of technology and its high-speed adoption in our lives.

These factors and many others are changing not only how businesses and economies are functioning, but also the job market landscape.

The knowledge and skills required by the present and future jobs are changing and consequently the education system at all levels has to respond and adapt to the new challenges.

Did you know that up to 85 percent of the jobs that today’s college students will have in 11 years haven’t been invented yet?

That’s according to a panel of experts assembled by the Institute for the Future, although an exact percentage is impossible to predict.

Business owners and leaders have to take action and initiative to help them grow.

But one size does not fit all.

Policymakers can achieve greater impact by better targeting their training interventions. If you want to help micro and small businesses survive, grow and create employment, building their marketing skills may be a good place to start

Roughly 2 billion people in the world live on $2 a day or less.

Of these, 50% are estimated to be micro entrepreneurs, running a small business to make ends meet but employing only a handful of people. If just a small proportion of these entrepreneurs were encouraged to grow and invest in their business, and hire more employees, it could transform the fortunes of developing economies, and billions of people living in poverty.

On that note, I am privileged to work with the Focus Youth Forum in Uganda who are training young people to become entrepreneurs. They have 85% unemployment in Uganda and I am truly moved and inspired to see what they are achieving through Taking Action, Initiative and Training.

I hope you have enjoyed this “Thought for the Week” and it has sparked some creativity for you!

And if you haven’t already, remember that I would love to help you to explore you own hopes, dreams and challenges and create a roadmap to success with you. You can book your Free Clarity Session

There is absolutely no obligation and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.


And this week on June 24th and 25th I am co-hosting a Virtual Conference all about Social Enterprise Success with a focus on Africa. It FREE TO ATTEND and you can reserve your place via one of these links:


I will be speaking on Thursday June 24th about “What is Your Purpose and Big Why?” and would love to see you there!

Have a great week!

Very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”


Thought for the Week – “S is for Support”

I hope you had a very enjoyable weekend.

Each week I am writing about the A to Z’s of Successful Business Owners and Leaders and this week is all about “S for Support”

Of course, it is also about ‘Success’ and the A to Z’s so far are about the qualities that business owners and leaders need to have to succeed.

As you know, I write my blog and email it to you as well. You can find my Blog, along with past posts HERE.

Successful people get things done. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be very successful.

But how do they do it?

They have big goals, they plan, they take risks, and they overcome setbacks.

But there is one more thing they do that greatly improves their chances of success – they ask for help.

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new”.

-Barack Obama-

 Asking for help comes in many forms – teambuilding, delegating, seeking a mentor or a coach, or outsourcing.

With all those opportunities to receive help, why do so many of us refuse to ask for it?


  • Fear of appearing weak.
  • Fear of losing autonomy.
  • Fear of rejection.

Whether you’re afraid of asking or merely don’t know where to find support, here are some tips to help you get the support you need to help you realise your dreams.

  • Hire freelancers or an assistant. Need more time to concentrate on what you love to do, a.k.a. what you’re good at? There will most likely be an upfront investment in time, training, and cash but the payoff can be huge. Once you get the ‘delegation bug’ you’ll wonder how you survived without it.
  • Seek advice from colleagues by recognising their value. Instead of saying, “I’m in over my head! Can you help me?!” try, “I was impressed with your presentation. Could you take a look at mine and provide some feedback?”
  • Bartering is back. Limited funds? Think about offering your service in exchange for a service you need.
  • Find a mentor. Chances are you know someone with the ‘been there done that’ experience you need. These savvy guides can offer inspiration, help you avoid the mistakes they’ve made, and provide contacts through their network.
  • Mastermind groups. Whether you’re looking for practical advice, accountability buddies, or the occasional shoulder to cry on, peer groups can help keep you on track to reach your goals. You give and receive help – a win-win situation!
  • Assess your existing resources. Help could be right under your nose. Do you have colleagues, peers or friends who could help? Start there and always look for opportunities to cultivate your network.
  • Lastly, could you hire a home-assistant. Unless chores are a form of meditation for you (as they can be to some), hiring someone who cooks, cleans, and runs errands can be well worth the cost. If that’s not in the budget delegate tasks to all members of the family / co-habitees to share the burden.

Seeking help doesn’t always come naturally to us, even when we know we need it. But asking for help can make a huge difference in your performance and ability to achieve success.

Besides, doing everything alone is not only unrealistic it’s unhealthy. Once you get over your fear and seek the help you need you increase the chances of accomplishing your goals with less effort, more time and less stress.

What’s stopping you from finding support?

“He who is afraid of asking is ashamed of learning”

-Danish Proverb-

I hope you have enjoyed this “Thought for the Week” and it has sparked some creativity new thinking! I would love to know what you think about all of this!

And if you haven’t already, remember that I would love to help you to explore you own hopes, dreams and challenges and create a roadmap to success with you.  You can book your Free Clarity Session

There is absolutely no obligation and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

Have a great week!

Very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”

Thought for the Week – “R is for Risk-Taking and Resilience”

I hope you had a very enjoyable weekend.

We know that Business Owners and Leaders are special people and see opportunity in every flaw …

  • Slow service
  • Poor product, and
  • Unmet need.

But here’s the secret of the most successful business owners and leaders …

Great business owners and leaders are made, not born. Those that make headlines put in years of work before their businesses become “overnight successes.”

You had to learn how to be great at what you do; entrepreneurship and leadership are just another skill set to add to your repertoire.

If you are considering setting up a new business — or have already taken the plunge — these personality traits will give you an edge. If the stars didn’t grant them to you, you can cultivate these characteristics and set yourself up for success.

And this is what the A to Z’s of Successful Business Owners and Leaders I am sending through each week is all about.

This week is all about “R for Risk-Taking and Resilience ” and all of the A to Z’s so far are about the qualities that business owners and leaders need to have to succeed.

As you know, I write my blog and email it to you as well. You can find my Blog, along with past posts HERE.

In last week’s post about “Q is for Qualities”, we touched on Risk-Taking …

Traits Challenges Action points for maximisation
10. Risk-taker
Optimistic, rational decisions, charismatic, confident, will to win, can deal with complexity Over-confidence, judgement errors, haste Take incremental risks, cool off, map knowledge and scenarios, experiment systematically

How comfortable are you with risk?

Being your own boss rates high on the reward spectrum, but the flip side of that coin is risk, and you have to be comfortable with it.

That risk-embracing, venturesome attitude is a quintessential aspect of the entrepreneurial mindset that both business owners and leaders must have.

Whether you’re launching a massive enterprise, dipping a toe in the water as a solopreneur or leading an organisation, you’ll have setbacks. You know this all too well by now!

We know that we have to be prepared for cash flow issues, supplier glitches, employee meltdowns, economic turndowns, and yes, even global pandemics!

And be prepared to fail.

If your business doesn’t stay afloat, that doesn’t mean your entrepreneurial dreams are dashed …

Maybe the idea wasn’t quite right, or the wrong approach, or merely the wrong time.

So, if this happens, rather than just closing the door on it, we have to be resilient, do a thorough analysis on what went wrong and learn how to fail better next time!

Resilience is our ability to bounce back from the stresses of life. It’s not about avoiding the stress, but learning to thrive within the stress.


Our productivity over the past 20 years has soared, and with this increase in productivity has come an increase in our stress levels. We may sacrifice accuracy and thoughtfulness for immediacy.


Our work–life balance has plummeted and burnout is being felt by many individuals.


Learning to live a more resilient life has numerous benefits including:


  • Decreased depressive symptoms & increased emotional well-being
  • Improved working memory
  • Improved sleep
  • Improved immune system function
  • Improved relationships
  • Improved coping when we experience emotional disruptions


There is no shame in not succeeding …


As Winston Churchill famously quipped …
“Success is just stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”


I didn’t succeed first time round with my business. I was trying to be all things to all people and it was only when I got really, really clear on who I help that things took off.

And we need Courage …

In order to harness the power of creativity, we must have the courage to act on our great ideas and plans.

“Often the difference between a successful person and a failure is not one’s better abilities of ideas but the courage that one has to bet on their idea, to take a calculated risk and to act.”

-Maxwell Maltz-

While you need to research your ideas thoroughly, you must also have the courage to take an unknown step and try things that are unfamiliar to you.

It goes without saying that finding a successful path in life is rarely a straight and narrow process.

Many entrepreneurs and leaders must take numerous steps to develop the right combination of skills, traits and knowledge to be successful with their efforts. If you focus your attention on nurturing these traits in your own life, you are highly likely to be able to enjoy better overall success with your efforts.

And often one big thing that holds up back, is needing things to be “perfect” before we go out there and do it! 

“We would no nothing if we wait until we could don it so well that no one would find fault with what we have done”

-Cardinal Newman-

One last thing …

I also believe that “R is also for Relationship-Building” and we can’t underestimate how important this is.

You will have seen some business owners and/or leaders, offer an amazing product or service and believed that alone would lead to their success.

An example: The brilliant plan you have for creating a new app that will revolutionise how people can fill their prescriptions, and have them delivered to their home before they’ve even made it back from the doctor’s office is a literal gold mine.

As a result, you throw all your time and resources into creating your perfect app, building an amazing webpage and have even started blogging — something you thought you’d never do — in an effort to get the word out about your product.

In the meantime, you’ve ignored emails from your angel investor for the last three weeks and have five voicemails that need to be returned. The potential client meeting you had last week — the one with the big group of local doctors that could have resulted in a marketing opportunity — you cancelled it because you were focused on the app interface and have yet to reschedule.

In this case, these connections and that person’s reputation are quickly being squandered because they haven’t paid attention to one of the most fundamental building blocks of any successful business — relationships.

So, whether you’re a new small business owner or a seasoned pro, you can never put enough time towards building and sustaining a network of engaged contacts.

I hope you have enjoyed this “Thought for the Week” and it has sparked some creativity new thinking! I would love to know what you think about all of this!

I will leave you with one last quote this week …

“I am always doing that which I cannot do

in order that I may learn how to do it”

-Pablo Picasso-

And if you haven’t already, remember that I would love to help you to explore you own hopes, dreams and challenges and create a roadmap to success with you.  You can book your Free Clarity Session

There is absolutely no obligation and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

Have a great week!

Very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”





Thought for the Week – “Q is for QUALITIES”

I hope you had a great bank holiday weekend.

I have been out and about enjoying the good weather here and I hope you have the same there.

So, we have been exploring the A to Z’s of Successful Business Owners and Leaders each week.

This week is all about “Q for QUALITIES” and all of the A to Z’s so far are about the qualities that Business Owners and Leaders need to have.

When you think of “Q”, you may well think of Q in James Bond! Q being a fictional character and standing for “Quartermaster”! And in James Bond films, they use letters for job titles, rather than a name, like “M” as well.

So, I want to spend a little time this week just thinking about the qualities, personality characteristics and behaviours that lead to venture creation and success.

For business leaders these are often entrepreneurial characteristics that create “Intrapreneurs”

Can one learn to be an entrepreneur, or is it a quality a person is born with?

Just as there are tests for IQ, EQ (Emotional Intelligence), MQ (Motivational Intelligence) and even SQ (Spiritual Intelligence), … how do we know who are natural-born entrepreneurs and who can be nurtured to launch and scale up successful businesses?

We have explored so many of these qualities over the past few weeks …

Gallup conducted research on 2,500 entrepreneurs to understand what it takes to create a business, scale it, make profits and create jobs.

They concluded that the ten key talents of successful entrepreneurs are:  –   

  • business focus
  • confidence
  • creative thinking
  • delegation
  • determination
  • independence
  • knowledge-seeking
  • promotion
  • relationship-building, and ·
  • risk-taking.

Some level of talent is innate, some can be nurtured and I thought you might find the following table interesting …

Traits Challenges Action points for maximisation
1. Business focus
Profit-oriented, plan for growth, clear goals, alignment with business, tight operations Can sometimes lose sight of customers Use timelines and yardsticks, communicate clearly, focus on human element also, read a lot
2. Confidence
Self-awareness, conviction in ability to succeed, action-oriented, pro-active Over-confidence, haste, over-commitment Plan ahead, prepare for contingencies, get diverse feedback, avoid the speed trap
3. Creative thinker
Firing off many ideas, curious, quick learner, exploratory, imaginative, alert Difficult to work in a team, rushing off in many directions Balance present and future, use metrics, prioritise, use simple structure, learn from failures
4. Delegator
Collaborate, recognise and draw on people’s abilities, encourage team contribution Abdicating responsibility, communication gaps Map processes and skills, allow employees to perform, give effective feedback
5. Determination
Persistent, eager to act, confront obstacles, not deterred by roadblocks Sticking with failing strategy, regret with  failed steps Share your optimism, partner with creative types, focus on big picture, be alert to environment
6. Independent
Resolute, faith in self, multi-tasking, responsible, multiple competencies, ‘can-do’ Burnout, difficulty in growing the team to scale the enterprise Focus on main objective, form alliances, delegate, don’t let love for your product blind you
7. Knowledge-seeker
Anticipate and use knowledge, drive for in-depth information, knowledge as an asset Generating too many new ideas, too many pivots Write and share ideas, prioritise, get outside inputs, create a clear roadmap for changes
8. Promoter
Communicator, speaks boldly, storyteller, ambassador, persuasive, enthusiastic Becoming blind to flaws, lack of objectivity Rehearse your story, use multiple media, build a whole community of evangelists and champions
9. Relationship-builder
Mutually-beneficial links inside and outside workplace, open, socially aware, integrity Time management, focus, lack of diversity in networks Diversify and renew networks, reciprocity, understand the local social landscape, be selective
10. Risk-taker
Optimistic, rational decisions, charismatic, confident, will to win, can deal with complexity Over-confidence, judgement errors, haste Take incremental risks, cool off, map knowledge and scenarios, experiment systematically

So, I hope this has given you food for thought this week!

I would love to know what you think about all of this!

And if you haven’t already, remember that I would love to help you to explore you own hopes, dreams and challenges and create a roadmap to success with you.  You can book your Free Clarity Session

There is absolutely no obligation and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

Have a great week!

Very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”

Thought for the Week – P is for Passion & Purpose, Planning, Perseverance and Principles

I hope you had a great weekend. I went for my first row of the season on Saturday and it was great to be out on the water again.

The next step in my weekly blog, which is all about the A to Z’s of Success of the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders, this week we are looking at “P” …

The thing is that “P” comes up a lot when it comes to success!

So, this week, I am writing about Passion & Purpose, Planning, Perseverance and Principles. Which actually all interconnect!

Passion & Purpose:

I have put this first because it is so important and at the core of success and we talked about this in “G for Goal”.

What is the reason you get out of bed each morning?

If you said something like; “Well, I have to go to work!”

Yes of course. And you may be passionate about what you do.

But you may not. Then ask yourself this question …

If you go to work, what does that give you? You may answer something like;

“Hmmm, money to pay my mortgage, pay my bills and put food on the table”

Again, yes of course! So, ask yourself now;

When you have money to pay your mortgage (or rent), pay your bills and put food on the table, what does that give you? You may say something like …

“Peace of mind, a sense of security” or something like that?

Now keep asking that question; “What does that give you?” until you get to the core of your Passion & Purpose. When you feel your energy shift up a gear, you are getting there.

My Passion & Purpose is all about Freedom for me because I was in a place in my life where I felt trapped by my circumstances and “Freedom and Peace” is what excites me.

It’s different for everyone of course and I help my clients to get to their core and raison d’etre.

The Japanese have a work for this in their dictionary: “IKIGAI” which means …

“A concept referring to having a direction or purpose in life, providing a sense of fulfilment and towards which they the person may take actions, giving them satisfaction and a sense of meaning”.

What is your Ikigai?

Why do you do what you do?

Why does your Company do what it does?

So many organisations, entrepreneurs and leaders know WHAT their Company does and most know HOW but very few know WHY.

Here’s an example of Southwest Airlines who started out being very clear about WHY they do what they do. READ HERE.
They thrive to this day because they live and breathe their “Big Why”.

If you haven’t already read it, you can read Simon Sinek’s book “Start with Why” HERE

As an entrepreneur and leader, how can you develop a strong workplace culture of positivity and growth with a strong “Why” you do what you are doing?

For instance; research has shown that millennials are driven less by profits than purpose.

It found that those workers were likely to stay in their jobs longer if they were satisfied with a workplace’s sense of purpose. Now that millennials dominate the workplace, connecting employees with purpose has become more crucial than ever.


What do astronauts; accountants and novelists have in common?

When they want to make big things happen, they plan ahead.

You know that achievement isn’t reached through luck or coincidence, it requires planning. Thinking and planning ahead increases the odds of taking calculated risks, bouncing back from setbacks, and achieving your goals.

Some people resist making plans. They prefer spontaneity.

Some fear planning will cramp their style or negatively impact their freedom.

But a good plan doesn’t need to impinge upon your freedom, spontaneity, and enjoyment of life.  It can simply be a guide that allows for adjustment along the way.

Planning has many benefits. It helps us to:

  • Improve decision-making.
  • Anticipate needs.
  • Identify problems and solutions.
  • Avoid costly, time consuming mistakes.
  • Be more efficient and productive.
  • Achieve important goals.

Planning doesn’t have to feel restrictive or imposing. The first step is to identify, visualise, and describe the desired result. For example, “I want to run a half marathon,” or “I want to learn Spanish.”  Then put your plan in place for how to get there.

So, you can see how this links in with Passion & Purpose!

Without knowing why we want to get somewhere, what we hope to achieve by getting there, how will be know when we arrive?

When starting out on a long journey, we wouldn’t start without setting up a sat nav or at least have a route plan.

Perseverance & Principles:

“When you reach an obstacle, turn it into an opportunity. You have the choice. You can overcome and be a winner, or you can allow it to overcome you and be a loser. The choice is yours and yours alone. Refuse to throw in the towel. Go that extra mile that failures refuse to travel. It is far better to be exhausted from success than to be rested from failure.”

-Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics-

And it is our Passion & Purpose that gives us that “fire in our belly” and that grit and determination!

It is our anchor that keeps us grounded and on point.

If any of this Thought for the Week has sparked even one small golden nugget, then that is my purpose for writing it and thank you for reading this to the end.

If you would like to explore any of this further with me, why not book a Free Clarity Session? There is absolutely no obligation and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

Have a great week!

With very best wishes for your success.

Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”



Thought for the Week – “O is for Opportunity”

I hope you had a great weekend.

You will know by now that my weekly blog is all about the A to Z’s of Success of the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders and we look at one letter each week. I have also been emailing it to you.

Last week’s Thought for the Week was “N is for No”.

And this week is all about “O is for Opportunity” …

“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
Albert Einstein

“It’s through curiosity and looking at opportunities in new ways
that we’ve always mapped our path.”

Michael Dell

“Failure is only the opportunity more intelligently to begin again.”
Henry Ford

Great entrepreneurs focus intensely on an opportunity where others see nothing.

This focus and intensity each help to eliminate wasted effort and distractions.

Most companies die from indigestion rather than starvation, i.e., companies suffer from doing too many things at the same time rather than doing too few things very well.

So, we have to stay laser-focused on the mission.

Yes, we have faced the biggest challenges with Covid – at the same time, every cloud really does have a silver lining when it comes to Opportunity!

And there are so many incredible business opportunities to try in 2021 and beyond …

So, choose your opportunity, or opportunities, wisely.

I am amazed by the number of businesses that have had record success since Covid hit the World and I am sure you are too. They spotted an opportunity and pivoted their business to change with the times.

If you are looking to start a new business, or another stream to your existing activities, here are just some of the opportunities these companies have succeeded with …

Customer Support …

Many companies need help in assisting their customers, so if you excel at this, why not create your own customer support service? You can offer to handle enquiries on their behalf via chat, email and phone, using help desk software that allows you to manage customer interactions from one central location.

Consulting …

This is one of the most common business opportunities and many specialists start consulting to help a broader range of people with a specific skill. For instance; you might be a Facebook Ads expert who helps businesses to run effective Facebook ads.

Whatever it is that you are an expert in, you can share this with others to help them succeed too. So, think about the key skill you excel in and then focus on finding people who need help with this.

Freelancing …

In freelancing, you practice your skill for other businesses, rather than share your knowledge as you would with consulting.

If you’re looking for a more hand-off business, you can hire freelancers and delegate projects to them, so you can better scale your business. Freelancing is an ideal business opportunity to pursue from home as it often involves writing, graphic design, photography etc.


Drop-shipping one of the best business opportunities when working from home. It has a low barrier of entry, making it a fantastic opportunity for creating another stream of income, or for beginners looking to start their first business.

In case you don’t know, drop-shipping is when a seller sells and manufacturers products, but it’s the manufacturer who creates, packages, and ships the products to the customer. So, this makes it a hands-off and inventory-free business.

You can sell products in an endless range of niches such as fashion, beauty, pets, home, automotive, and so much more. If you’re looking to start an online business, this is one of the most popular business opportunities you can capitalise on today

Print on Demand …

As well as drop-shipping being popular, print on demand is also proving to be a popular opportunity. With print on demand, you design your own products and then a manufacturer prints, packages and ships products to customers on your behalf.

The critical difference between drop-shopping and print on demand is that with the latter, you’re selling one-of-a-kind products that nobody else is selling. Whilst you would have to do your market research first to see what people want (you can use Google to assess this too), the advantage is that you’ll be the only seller offering this.

Other opportunities include …

Blogging – where you have the opportunity to create many potential sources of income through things like affiliate marketing, sponsorships etc. You can even earn passive income by publishing articles.

Affiliate Marketing – you can become an affiliate of your chosen top brands, such as Amazon, Shopify etc. and an affiliate marketer earns a small percentage of sales they bring in, and with volume, this can be extremely lucrative. You would promote these products by recommending them through a web site or blog for instance.

These are just a few examples of successful businesses who have spotted an opportunity and it has really worked for them.
“If a window of opportunity appears, don’t pull down the shade.”
Tom Peters

Why not explore your opportunities with me in a FREE CLARITY SESSION? You can book it HERE and we can meet via Zoom or Skype. There is absolutely NO OBLIGATION. So it really is a no-brainer.

Have a great week!

With very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”

Thought for the Week – N is for “No”!

I hope you had a great weekend.

You will know by now that my weekly blog is all about the A to Z’s of Success of the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders and we look at one letter each week. I have also been emailing it to you each week.

Last week’s Thought for the Week was “M is for Move with the Cheese”.

This week is all about “N is for No”!

N is for saying “No” when we need to!

Many business owners and leaders really struggle with this because, of course we want to be able to say “yes” and at the same time know we can’t say yes to everything

It all boils down to …

  1. WHEN to say “No”, and
  2. HOW to say ‘No” in such a way that we feel good about!

1.When to say “No”

Firstly, whether it’s a colleague asking you to do something for them, or a client, of course we have to decide whether the request is within our area of focus and / or responsibility.

The key here is to be crystal clear about what it is you provide and decide whether you want to take this on or not. All too often the waters get muddied because we want to be flexible and helpful – right?

The thing is though; if we are not clear, then how can we expect the other person to be clear about what we do and don’t do?

And then once we do something outside of our area of focus, we will hear;

“Well, you did it for me last time”! Sound familiar?

Then yes, we have set a precedent, then becomes even trickier to say “No”!

When it comes to clients, we have to be clear about …

  • what it is we do,
  • what problems we solve and
  • be specific about what we can and can’t help them with.

Another thing to consider is …

There is no free lunch!

And this works both ways for the person asking and for the person being asked.

Most of us learn early in life that we can’t get something for nothing. It’s a lesson we sometimes forget and have to re-learn (more than once).

Choices are necessary, if not always pleasant. There’s only so much time and money and talent available at one time and spending an hour on one thing means that we know we can’t spend this hour on something else.

And a pound spent on one thing is a pound no longer available for something else and we have to make choices all the time.

Harvard Professor Michael Porter describes the essence of strategy as; 

“deciding what not to do.” He says; 

“Leaders who aren’t able to make tough choices doom their organizations to mediocrity when they do too many things in an adequate way and nothing with excellence as the desirable standard”

The hardest thing for a new company to do is say “No” to a customer. But if you chase every shiny penny you see coming, you shouldn’t be surprised if you end up somewhere you didn’t want to be!

Businesses evolve, but they can’t be everything to everybody. Recognising when trade-offs have to be made, and having the mental discipline to make hard choices often separates the winners from the losers.

To help with saying “No”, here is a list of things to ask yourself before saying “Yes” …

  • How do I feel about this request?
  • Do I really want this or doing it to please someone else?
  • What is the benefit to me in saying “yes”?
  • What is the cost of saying “no”?
  • If I do this, will I enjoy it?
  • Do I have to answer right now or can I delay my decision?
  • Do I need more information before I make my decision?
  • Would I prefer an alternative? If so, what?

Then we come to …

2.HOW to say “No” 

This is all about how we communicate, in what situation we find ourselves in, whether the person making the request is a client, a colleague, a supplier or your boss, if you have one, etc.

So, HOW we say no has to match the dynamics here of course.

This is something I go into in more depth in my new Group Coaching Programme starting soon called “The Communication Code –

If you would like to know more, you can find out here:

Also, if you haven’t already booked your FREE CLARITY SESSION with me, you can book it HERE and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

There is absolutely NO OBLIGATION. So it really is a no-brainer.

Have a great week!

With very best wishes for your success.

Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”

Thought for the Week – “M is for Move with the Cheese”!

You are probably familiar with the book: “Who Moved My Cheese?”, which has been around for around 20 years now. However, its message had stood the test of time because people get as much out of it now as they did – perhaps even more so.

If you are unfamiliar with the book, you will probably wonder what this is all about and how it relates to you as a business owner and / or leader?

“Who Moved My Cheese?” (by Dr Spenser Johnson) is a simple parable that reveals profound truths about us human beings. It is an amusing and enlightening story of four characters who live in a maze and look for cheese to nourish them and make them happy.

Cheese is a metaphor for what you want to have in life – whether it is a good job, a loving relationship, money or a possession, health, peace of mind, or whatever.


The 4 characters in the book are: –

2 mice …

SNIFF – who sniffs out change early.

SCURRY – who scurries into action.

2 ‘little people’ …

HEM – who denies and resists change as he fears it will lead to something worse.

HAW – who learns to adapt in time when he sees changing can lead to something better.

The mice; Sniff and Scurry, possess simple brains and good instinct and they search for a hard nibbling cheese that they light – as mice often do.

Hem and Haw use their complex brains filled with many beliefs and emotions to search for a very different kind of cheese with a capital ‘C’ which they believe will make them feel happy and successful.

They all had this in common and every day, they would put on their jogging suits and running shoes, leave their homes and race to the maze looking for their favourite cheese!

Remembering that “Cheese” is a metaphor for what you want to have in life – whether it’s a good job, a loving relationship, money, a possession, health, peace of mind, or whatever.

And it makes us think about how we actually adapt to change and how our teams adapt (if we have them) and how to help them to adapt and embrace change.

Change is happening everywhere and we will do better when we can adjust to it quickly!

Here’s an example …

It was suggested to a company, who was selling their encyclopaedia as a set of more than 20 books, that they should put their whole encyclopaedia on a single computer disc and sell it for a fraction of the cost. This would be easier to update, it would cost much less to manufacture and so many more people could have access it. However, they all resisted.

Why did they resist?

Because they believed then that the backbone of their business was their large sales force who called on people door-to-door. Their sales force depended on the large commissions they earned from the high price of their product and had been doing this successfully for a long time and thought it would go on forever.

But they didn’t notice that they needed to change what had once been working and that was their only means of income and so they hung on to it.

When one of their competitors did change, their sales plummeted and of course, other technological changes have been happening ever since and continue to evolve.

When people never change, they will pray pay a price for it eventually. Sometimes they feel entitled to their ‘cheese’ and feel like victims when it’s taken away and they blame others. And they get so much more stressed than the people who move on and adapt.

The question is what do we need to let go off and what do we need to move on to?

Our basic values may not change – at the same time, we know that we would be much better off to move with the cheese a lot sooner.

Sometimes business owners are managing when they need to be leading.

And in leading, their job is to paint a picture of a vision they all want to pursue so they can all enjoy changing and succeeding.

And all the Sniffs, the Scurry’s, Hems and Haws need to be treated differently …

The Sniffs could sniff out that changes in the marketplace can help to update the corporate Vision and be encouraged to identify how the changes could result in new products and services that their customers would want.

The Scurries might like to get things done so they are encouraged to take actions based on the new corporate Vision. They probably need to be monitored, so they don’t scoot off in the wrong direction though and be rewarded for actions that brought the company new ‘cheese’. They will enjoy working in a company that values action and results.

Hems are unfortunately often the anchors that slow you down as they are either too comfortable or too afraid to change. Some of the Hems only change when they see the sensible vision that shows them how changing would work to their advantage.

They want to work in a place that is safe and any change needs to make sense to them and increase their sense of security. When they realise that the real danger is in not changing, some of them will change and do well. And the Vision can help you to turn many of your Hems into Haws.

If it comes down to it the Hems who do not want to change and still resist, you may just have to let them go – because if you don’t, there is a real danger that things will not change and your business would be in trouble. Of course, nobody wants to have to do that and we hope that we can help them to adapt to change.

Even Hems can sometimes see the advantage of changing, such as the advantage of keeping their jobs or even getting a good pay rise. The powerful part is when they can recognise their fear and go on to paint a picture in their mind of enjoying the new cheese. It will make change less fearful and more enjoyable and eventually they get a better deal.

Haws – in reality, Haws are initially hesitant and then they are open minded enough to learn something new, act differently and adapt in time to help you to succeed. They expect change and actively look for it, and because they understand human nature, they can help you to paint a realistic vision of new ‘cheese’ that makes good sense to pretty much everybody.

Haws like to work in an organisation that gives people that confidence and the tools to change. They will help you to keep your sense of humour as you go after your new ‘cheese’.

When you can see a new ‘cheese’ / Vision that you really like and want to go after, imagine yourself enjoying it – it lightens everything up. When you see how it can improve things, you / your team get more interested in making the change happen.

Sometimes we have to let go of old cheese that is of no value. And the old cheese can just be an old behaviour that we really need to let go off and then move on to a better way of thinking and acting.

Repeating the same behaviour will just get you the same results.

When people are afraid of change they resist it. Instead of waiting for things to change for the better, we have to change the way we are being.

Once we realise all this, change really can lead us to a new and better place. Even though we may be afraid it won’t at the time, we will see the benefits eventually.

So, involve people in the change. In short;

“A change imposed is a change opposed”

But when the ‘cheese’ story is shared, it literally changes everything because it helps people to change the way they look at change. It helps everyone laugh, or at least smile, at their old fears and want to move on.

You don’t want to let your business fail, to start letting people go or closing your business. You want to help everybody to see things differently and eventually cope better.

Remember; there is new cheese out there just waiting to be found!

So, instead of worrying about the cheese being moved, get out there and look for the new cheese! it saves a lot of time and stress.

Before long people who have been resisting change see the advantage of changing and even help to bring it about.

The reason people want to stay the same is because they believe that change will be bad for them.

And even for those who don’t really feel that way, they too often agree in order to fit in. And that is the sort of Peer Pressure that fights change in any organisation.

Once people are aware of the 4 characters, the peer pressure changes because nobody wants to look like Hem!

So, move with the cheese – and enjoy it!

You can download a copy of the book HERE if you would like it – it’s a tiny book on a huge topic and takes just one hour to read!

If you haven’t already, I invite you to book your FREE CLARITY SESSION with me HERE and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”


Thought for the Week – “L is for Learning”

I hope you had a great weekend!

I have been emailing you weekly with the A to Z’s of Success of the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders and looking at one letter each week and last week’s Thought for the Week was “K is for Knowledge” – I hope you found it of value.

So, this week is all about “L for LEARNING” and of course with the work I have been doing for the past 30 years, I am seen to be an expert in this area.
I wonder what Confucius would have to say about ‘Learning’?

Well, it goes without saying that the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders are proactive learners.

We all experience our own “Learning Curve” in different ways and we prefer to learn through different modes.
Personally, I learn best through experiencing things and I also have a strong visual preference and if I see something written down or in a diagram, I recall it easily.

My clients vary in the way they learn and it is important for me to recognise their individual styles and preferences so that we can make real progress in our work together.

Many of you will know about “NLP” – Neuro Linguistic Programming – for those who are unfamiliar …NLP is the practice of understanding how people organise their thinking, feeling, language and behaviour to produce the results they do.

NLP provides people with a methodology to model outstanding performances achieved by geniuses and leaders in their field. NLP is also used for personal development and for success in business.

A key element of NLP is that we form our unique internal mental maps of the world as a product of the way we filter and perceive information absorbed through our five senses from the world around us.

You can read more about NLP here vis the NLP Academy in the UK:

A couple of years ago, I refreshed my teaching skills and so much is included now for teachers around different learning styles, inclusion, diversity etc. and for those of you who are parents, you will know how much learning has evolved since your own school days!

There are currently seven learning styles: –

  • Visual (spatial) Learner – prefers learning by observing things.
  • Aural (auditory) Learner – normally learns best through verbal presentations like lectures and speeches.
  • Verbal (linguistic) Learner – prefers using words, both in speech and writing
  • Physical (kinesthetic) Learner – getting hands-on is a must for these learners who love to tinker and learn best when they can do rather than see or hear.
  • Logical (mathematical) Learner – if there is logic, reasoning and numbers involved, these learners are sure to excel.
  • Social (interpersonal) Learner – enjoys learning in groups and collaborating with others.
  • Solitary (intrapersonal) Learner – prefers to use self-study and work alone.

So, for those of you who dislike slides in presentations, e.g., “Death by Power Point”, you are probably not so much a visual learner.

And if you don’t see the point of music or audio, that’s there for the aural learners.

By the way, the reason I don’t usually send images in emails is because they can get blocked by email servers.

What is your preferred learning style?

And if you employ people, what are their learning styles?

If you are struggling to communicate in certain areas with your team, I invite you to give this some thought and how you can give directions or present in a different way that will be better received and understood.

How do you know how people learn? This is a huge subject in itself!

However, there are clues such as the words they use. For instance;

  • I see what you mean” could indicate they are a visual learner.
  • I feel I need that” could indicate they are more of a physical / kinesthetic learner.
  • I hear what you’re saying!” – perhaps they are more of an aural learner.

You get the gist!

Here’s a great quote from Benjamin Franklin …

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”

Here’s another …

“Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.”
– Albert Einstein –

And Confucius says …

“He who learns but does not think, is lost! He who thinks but does not learn is in great danger.”


Personally, Mondays are my day to “Sharpen my saw”! For those of you who have read Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits of Highly Successful People”, you will get this. I read, I watch webinars, and I love to participate and experience things in groups.

I have learned so much from the mistakes I have made along the way too and for me, there is REAL learning in acknowledging our mistakes and how much we have learned from them.

… and I am sure that Confucius would have something to say about that too!

If you haven’t already, I invite you to book your FREE CLARITY SESSION with me HERE and we can meet via Zoom or Skype.

Have a great week!

With very best wishes for your success.

Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”

Thought for the Week – K is for KNOWLEDGE

Good morning!

I hope you had a great weekend and all is going well.

As you know, I have been going through the A to Z of Success and looking at one letter each week!

Last week’s Thought for the Week was “J is for Judgement” and I hope you got some more nuggets from it!

I have been giving a lot of thought again to this week’s because it’s another interesting one for us business owners and leaders!

This week is all about “K for KNOWLEDGE” – what does ‘knowledge mean to you?

How often do hear; “Knowledge is Power”?

For me, knowledge is much richer than just soaking up information and knowing about things …

Prior to Covid, I was exploring how to take my business online, as well as face-to-face, and I really started getting into the science of it – because that is what I have found it to be – a science!

Then Covid hit us and I thought; “OK, I am going to up the ante now and get this done”

And I realised that having an online business is a totally different world to a physical one – as I am sure many of you have found too!

When we network locally or in our industry, people have got to know us to varying degrees and they have a sense of what we stand for.

They already know whether they know, like and trust you.

However, online, people don’t know anything about us and because there is just so much noise online and people just don’t have much time to research you … unless you tickle their curiosity and they are inspired to find out more about you!

So, I realised that this is a whole new world – and it takes time to build that up!

And we have to personalise what we do far more in our communication and marketing messaging.

All of the ‘gurus’ out there who have already succeeded tell us that we should do this and do that – some things they say are consistent and others are not.

So, we are left to work it out for ourselves aren’t we!

I invested in a course that I believed would help me and I learned a lot.

What was missing for me though was that piece around how I actually apply what I learned to my own business and, more importantly for me; how did this align with my personal values, life goals and what I stand for?

How many of you can relate to that?

So, I took some time out and reflected on all of this new-found knowledge and how that fits in with what I stand for.

And that is the key here – what we STAND for in our business and our role.

You will know from my strap line “Business With Heart” that I stand for doing business in a way that connects with like-minded people, supports communities and the entre chain up and down an organisation.

This is KEY to the wellbeing of everyone throughout that chain and ultimately the business itself.

So, my point is this …

  • Having knowledge is a positive thing – it is very much in our HEAD though.
  • How about that inner knowing that comes from our HEART?
  • And how do we connect the two and communicate that in what we do?
  • Why would we do that?

Well, here is an example …

  • How much do you KNOW about what your customers actually want and /or need?
  • How do your KNOW that and what do you base this knowledge on?
  • Some of you will have asked them either directly or through Market Research.
  • Some of you may base this knowledge on buying behaviours and or trends.
  • Some of you may not have thought about this very much and take a more scattergun approach hoping that something will stick and people will contact you – and of course some will.

How well are any of these strategies working for you?

If you get 5% success, what would make that 20%, 50% or even higher?

Things are changing so much in our World as we all know only too well.

Now, people buy through EXPERIENCE and how they FEEL about things.

So, what happens if we try to communicate with them though head-thinking, logic and showing them how much we believe we know about them?

There is a disconnect there because we have to connect with their hearts!

So, yes, having knowledge is great …

And then; how do you communicate heart to heart with potential and existing clients?

I found an interesting article on Forbes that talks about Knowing What Your Customers Want and they are talking about marketing and brands …

“The brands that win the hearts, minds and wallets of their customers don’t do it with traditional marketing messages that make people think only about the brand. Instead, the brands that win make customers think about themselves”.

This powerful concept comes from Brent Adamson, vice president and “chief storyteller” at Gartner. Adamson.

His point is that if you want to build a relationship with your customers, one that goes beyond just simple one-at-a-time transactions, your marketing messages need to target the customer instead of the brand. How do you do that?”

Brent Adamson suggests marketing messages that are focused on the customer and so many are all about the company, their knowledge, experience etc.

Of course, you want to sell what you do and succeed at it!

So, here are a few ways to start communicating heart to heart …

Personalise your messages like you are talking to that individual, e.g., you can mention their favourite purchases and preferences etc.

The sales part of emails, letters, social media posts etc. can be secondary to a message that is truly customer-focussed, i.e., what are their biggest challenges? What are they struggling with etc?

It needs to be helpful to your customer, or potential customers, like they feel like you really get them and are speaking to them personally.

These are your ideal customers because they will resonate with what you stand for.

Make all of your communications valuable and helpful.

Ensure this all continues on your after-sales experience by thinking of ways you can continue to offer support as needed.

For instance, sending them a “Happy Birthday” message, perhaps with a birthday coupon isn’t enough. Because your database automates this and people are so switched on now and they realise this.

Whereas, personalised, helpful messages that validate their choice to do business with you because you genuinely care more than just getting them to spend money with you.

Connecting with people in this way – this “care” – connects heart-to-heart and people like doing business with a company that cares about them.

Gartner, the Research Company, have valued this is terms of spend …

“64% of customers will spend more versus only 14% if there is a low brand connection. It pays to be helpful. It pays to care”.


I would love to hear what you think about this! Just drop me a line if you wish.

If you would like my help with this then I invite you to book your FREE CLARITY SESSION with me HERE.

Have a great week!

With very best wishes for your success.


Find out more about “The A to Z’s of Success”